Archive for the ‘Jackie Martling’
Former Briarcliff Manor deejay Howard Stern yesterday got into an epic clash with Gary Dell’Abate, the show’s executive producer. Stern was angry that Dell’Abate (a.k.a. “Bababooey”) broadcast a prank phone call on the post-show program without first asking Stern’s permission.
During this already uncomfortable exchange, an argument within an argument broke out. Sal “The Stockbroker” Governale entered the studio, claiming he tried to tell Dell’Abate not to play the prank call without asking Stern first. Dell’Abate exploded with expletives at the writer, who was telling the truth but appeared to be kissing up to Stern. It was at this point that I realized that I’m almost always going to side with Dell’Abate over both Stern and Governale, because Dell’Abate seems to be the among the most prepared, justified and well-intended member of the crew.
That got me thinking: With whom would I side if two or more Stern show personnel were arguing, if both/all arguments were equally valid? So, I came up with an arbitrary list of 13 active Stern show regulars (no Jackie Martling or “Stuttering” John Melendez here), ranking them from my most frequent argument ally to my least-frequent argument ally. The list does not include infrequent guests, such as staff members’ family or significant others.
Here are my top three allies, with the rest of the Stern crew listed after the break:
1. Fred Norris – Rarely speaks, but when he does, he’s usually the best voice of reason. I’d actually give Dell’Abate the edge here, but Norris is a Yankee fan while Dell’Abate roots for the Mets. He can be a bit of a music snob, though. Agreement score: 9.5.
2. Gary DellÃ¢â‚¬â„¢Abate – As I mentioned, the guy seems to be the most prepared, justified and nicest guy on the entire staff. He also can remember the details of some of the most obscure moments in show history, so he is a trusted authority. Agreement score: 9.
3. Artie Lange – Perhaps the most naturally funny member of the staff, Lange’s well-placed punchlines, self-effacing nature and generous attitude make me empathize for the guy when the staff is picking on his weight or history with gambling and drugs. Plus, he’s a huge Yankees and New York Giants fan. Agreement score: 8.5.
Where did the Howard Stern show first go to try to replace sidekick Jackie ‘The Jokeman’ Martling? Westchester County Airport. • 03.13.07
Today on the Howard Stern show, Jackie Ã¢â‚¬Å“The JokemanÃ¢â‚¬? Martling returned as a sit-down guest for the first time since the show moved from terrestrial radio to Sirius satellite radio on Jan. 9, 2006. There were plenty of laughs and awkward exchanges between Martling and friend/rival Fred Norris, who both wrote jokes for the shock jock before Martling left the show after a drawn-out contract dispute.
In early 2001, Martling rejected a final contract offer from Infinity Broadcasting (now CBS Radio) to return to the show and laugh too hard at his own jokes. Stern — who launched his professional radio career at 107.1 FM in Briarcliff Manor — agonized over the transition to move on, but it was one he said he had to make, according to producer Gary Dell’Abate (a.k.a. Ã¢â‚¬Å“BababooeyÃ¢â‚¬?).
After todayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s show, the producer explained to listeners how Stern made his first real step toward replacing Martling by authorizing Dell’Abate to pick up a prospective replacement at Westchester County Airport, which straddles North Castle and Harrison and borders Fairfield County, Conn.:
<blockquote><div>Howard called me that weekend and he was like, Ã¢â‚¬ËœListen, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s done. JackieÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not coming back. I just got off the phone with (92.3 FM General Manager) Tom (Chiusano). The last offer was made. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re moving forward.Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ And for Howard to speak those words was very difficult. And I remember we talked about who would we get to sit in. Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ He goes, Ã¢â‚¬ËœHey, you know, Ron Zimmerman? The comedian? HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d like to sit in.Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ And I remember, it was a big deal. I had to go to Westchester Airport on a Saturday night and put on my credit card a first-class ticket for him to come in overnight. But I remember when Howard gave me the go-ahead — he was like, Ã¢â‚¬ËœFly him inÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ — that was really the finality of it: that, like, weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re putting a different guy in that chair. And it was hard for him. It was hard for him to do that. He did not want to do that. It wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t what he wanted, but he was like, Ã¢â‚¬ËœI have to move ahead.Ã¢â‚¬â„¢</div></blockquote>
In the months that followed, other comedians — including Tarrytown product Greg Fitzsimmons — would audition for the right to sit in MartlingÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s chair. Former Ã¢â‚¬Å“Mad TVÃ¢â‚¬? star Artie Lange was awarded Ã¢â‚¬Å“The Jackie ChairÃ¢â‚¬? later that year.
(Associated Press file photo/Louis Lanzano)